One of the great resources of Kunde Family Estate is our old-vine Shaw Vineyard, located in the hills in the middle of the Estate. We use this fruit not only for our Reserve bottling but there's always plenty left over to enhance this Sonoma Valley Estate wine as well. The 2007 Kunde Zinfandel is made up of nearly 40% old-vine vineyard grapes, supplemented by our other wonderful estate Zinfandel vineyards. Kunde's red volcanic soil makes for a boysenberry-scented, elegant wine that is still plenty bold and ripe to remind you that this is definitely Zinfandel, after all! That silky texture and the ripe chocolate truffle flavors will fold right in to a French dip or barbequed beef sandwich.
Kunde Estate Winery
Since the early 1900s, five generations of the Kunde family have preserved the family tradition of farming their fertile, highly praised vineyards located in the heart of the Sonoma Valley. Their picturesque 2000-acre estate has been planted with 800 acres of wine grapes, the vast majority of which are now used to create the Kunde's entire line of hand crafted, ultra-premium wines. Their 100% estate grown varietals include Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Zinfandel, Sauvignon Blanc, Syrah and Viognier.
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Twice as large as Napa in size, Sonoma County only makes about half as much wine as its northeasterly neighbor. Because of its vast size, however, Sonoma is able to achieve far more diversity within its borders, which include sub-AVAs that are climatically varied. The atmosphere of Sonoma is decidedly laid-back and down-to-earth, but the wines are serious and well-made, ranging in style from subtle and elegant to rich and powerful. Grape varieties are more varied here, from Pinot Noir and Zinfandel to Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay.
The largest sub-AVAs of Sonoma include Dry Creek Valley, Russian River Valley, Alexander Valley and Sonoma Valley. Each sub-AVA, with its own micro-climate, is unique in its grape varieties and styles of wine. Dry Creek makes a mean Zinfandel while Russian River produces stand up Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The Alexander Valley makes some of the better Cabernet Sauvignons in the county and Sonoma Valley creates excellent wines from all the above varieties. Other grapes found throughout Sonoma include Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot and Syrah.
It's not rare to see a wine's country of origin listed as "California." A country unto itself in the wine world, California makes enough varieties and styles to match many European wine countries. It produces a diverse range of wines that span the quality spectrum.
The most famous of the California wine regions is Napa Valley, and these wines are certainly outstanding – but it's not as broad and diverse as its larger neighbor, Sonoma County. Down south, Santa Barbara's Santa Maria Valley is well-known for its Rhône blends, as well as cool-climate varieties like Pinot and Chardonnay. The Central Coast, the largest California AVA, has many different microclimates that lead to a wide range of wines with many sub-AVAs.
Outstanding value at $12.99. Paired with a red wine salami and gruyere cheese as a starter and fusilli pasta topped with a red wine tomato sauce with spice pork sausage and beef as a main. The red wine salami and cheese really complimented this wine well and vice versa. The pasta couldn't have worked better with this wine. Robust deep, dark berries with pepper and spice on the nose. Very welcoming after opening up a bit. Complexity, character, and a brashness that I love about Zinfandel yet still under control and not chaotic in the finish that can accompany some Zins that just want to be bold for the sake of being bold. Another Kunde Estate Zin and another experience I'm happy to relive while writing this review. This bottle, when allowing to open up and paired correctly, will not disappoint and so far neither have any of the Kunde bottles I've bought.
Most wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.